Why can't Obama treat political opponents with respect, like these fine men? (by Gerard Van der Leun)

Those sensitive, shrinking violets on the right took a day off from their racist dog whistles and comparing Barack Obama to murderous tyrants to whine about their hurt fee-fees.

The Very Courageous Paul Ryan mewled that Obama was “excessively partisan” and the non-partisan Wall Street Journal one-upped him, deeming the speech “blisteringly partisan.” The National Review’s Jim Geraghty was quite upset that Obama so “ferociously demonized” poor Ryan. Former Bush administration official Greg Mankiw also objected to Obama’s “demonizing the opposition.” And Charles Krauthammer gasped,

I rarely heard a speech by a president so shallow, so hyper-partisan and so intellectually dishonest, outside the last couple of weeks of a presidential election where you are allowed to call your opponent anything short of a traitor.

My goodness, pass the smelling salts.

But I don’t know why these gentlemen are so surprised. Obama’s been talking this way for years.

Take, for instance, the time he accused Republicans who opposed the stimulus of wanting the Great Recession to last longer,

Some say, well, maybe the recession should have been deeper.

Then there was the time he lashed out at certain Republicans for opposing the war in Afghanistan.

There’s a group in the opposition party who are willing to retreat before the mission is done. They’re willing to wave the white flag of surrender. And if they succeed, the United States will be worse off, and the world will be worse off.

And later, he even suggested Republicans were undermining the troops in his State of the Union address.

As our troops fight a ruthless enemy determined to destroy our way of life, they deserve to know that their elected leaders who voted to send them to war continue to stand behind them. Our troops deserve to know that this support will remain firm when the going gets tough.

Or what about the time he accused Republican critics of his intervention in Libya of being racists?

There’s a lot of people in the world who don’t believe that people whose skin color may not be the same as ours can be free and self-govern.

Well, the tiger’s not going to change his stripes. A bully’s a bully.

Conservatives will just have to hope that all this partisan incivility will hurt Obama in 2012.